Call For Help To Protect Historic Sites
today pledged to work with English Heritage to investigate how more
effective protection can be given to ancient sites buried beneath
farmland in Britain.
follows campaigning by the government's own agency for greater financial
support to be given to farmers working land that covers scheduled
monuments, in line with changes to the Common Agriculture Policy.
are currently legally permitted to plough such sites already in
environment chairman John Seymour said: "We recognise with
English Heritage that changes to farming policy at home and in Europe
provide a useful opportunity to revisit this issue. But we need
to ensure that changes bring benefits for farmers and our heritage.
We need to use language that encourages rather than undermines partnership."
NFU also used the opportunity to call on Defra, and Tessa Jowell's
Department for Culture, Media and Sport to work with local authorities
and archaeologists to ensure farmers are told about the location
and importance of remains.
Seymour added: "In the majority of cases, damage that has been
caused to these sites has been the result of farmers not being informed
about the sites rather than as a result of any malicious intent.
itself has uncovered many sites that were previously unknown, and
farmers have volunteered the information to local archaeologists.
We hope that the many farmers who already work with English Heritage
to chart and protect these finds continue to do so."
building, housing developments and service providers also pose a
considerable threat to the country's scheduled monuments.